Belfast Telegraph

Revealed: Five best places to live in Northern Ireland, according to Sunday Times

Rostrevor lies at the foot of Slieve Martin and on the coast of Carlingford Lough. A bridge on the Cloughmore Road over the Kilbroney River
Rostrevor lies at the foot of Slieve Martin and on the coast of Carlingford Lough. A bridge on the Cloughmore Road over the Kilbroney River
Rostrevor lies at the foot of Slieve Martin and on the coast of Carlingford Lough. Yachts pictured on Carlingford Lough as seen from the Shore Road.
Rory McIlroy and fiancee Erica Stoll

By Cate McCurry

The best places to live in Northern Ireland have been unveiled.

Seaside locations appear to be the most favoured and ideal places to set down roots, with Portstewart, Ballycastle and Rostrevor making the top six alongside the Erneside town of Enniskillen.

Also featured in the top locations to live are Cultra in Co Down and south Belfast.

The list was compiled by the Sunday Times, and will be published this weekend.

It is part of the newspaper's Best Places To Live guides.

The annual supplements combine data and statistics such as crime rates, house prices and school performance, with the input of Sunday Times writers to find the top locations to make your home.

Northern Ireland's exceptional locations were selected for offering the best quality of life to the widest number of people, and combining desirable features such as a positive community spirit, good local shops and services and attractive outdoor spaces.

Some of the featured towns also boast the most expensive homes in Northern Ireland, including Cultra where golfer Rory McIlroy has a home.

Ballycastle often features on the best places to live list and came out on top last year.

Enniskillen in Co Fermanagh is famed for its magnificent lakeland setting, picturesque scenery and untouched beauty, with Lough Erne as the backdrop.

Manannan Mac Lir, the Celtic Sea God, looks out from his home on Binevenagh Mountain at sunset on Thursday December 29 2016. Photo by Eoin McConnell
Manannan Mac Lir, the Celtic Sea God, looks out from his home on Binevenagh Mountain at sunset on Thursday December 29 2016. Photo by Eoin McConnell
This was taken on October 2016 at Murlough reserve. Where the mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea. Submitted by Deborah Anderson from Lisburn
Sunrise at Clarendon Dock, Belfast. Picture: Bev Cripps
Sunrise at Clarendon Dock, Belfast. Picture: Bev Cripps
Belfast Waterworks - taken by Erin Maguire. Oct 2016
Hi, I thought this photograph that I took at Lagan madows taken last Thursday (20-10-16). It was a eautiful afternoon....13c Sunshine - Reflections - Idyllic - Nature at its best!!! - Pauline Greenaway
Taken in Stormont Park: no better place for shushing through leaves and getting messy. October 2016. By Kate Lewis Mairs, Belfast.
Ritchy Kimmins from Newry. The picture was taken in Kilbroney Park, Rostrevor and it is of the Holm Oak tree. The picture was taken last weekend as this tree is over 200 years old.
St Philips and St James church grounds in Holywood. Couldn't help but snap this brushstroke of evening sun. Taken October 2016 by Jen Dickson
I took this round the corner from my house in Greyabbey in Co Down on October 19, 2016, at 1.30pm. It was a very blustery day and the sky was doing crazy things! Submitted by Jill Smyth
Autumn in Antrim, 2016, submitted by Mairead McCann
This is a picture taken by myself on 20/10/16 of the trees in Alexandra Park, Belfast - Gerard McCartan
This photo was taken on October 4, 2016 at 7am in Letterkenny. It features Conwal parish church in the town'a beautiful and historic Cathedral quarter. Submitted by Cathal McGlynn
A magnificent sunrise over Rathlin Island - Picture submitted by Ian McCullough, Oct 3 2016 .
Harvest moon and Penumbral Lunar Eclipse on Friday 16 Sept 2016 at Donaghadee lighthouse. Picture by Bernie Brown
Harvest moon and Penumbral Lunar Eclipse on Friday 16 Sept 2016 at Donaghadee lighthouse. Picture by Bernie Brown
Mist rolling in over Binevenagh Mountain, Limavady. Picture Submitted by Eoin McConnell. Nov 2015
Hugh McCloy, from Moneymore Co Derry took this picture of Lough Melvin Flangans Point, looking across the lough to the mountains
Trevor Denton From Crumlin took this at the harbour in Buncrana. It will probably take more than a lick of paint to get this vessel shipshape again. Nov 2015
Steven Hylands, from Banbridge took this picture of Clare Glen. You can see a herron in the distance waiting patiently to catch any fish swimming down stream! November 2015
A stunning evening in Portstewart. Pic: Alannah Morrow
A beautiful August day in Annalong, Co Down. By Paul Briggs from Portadown
Victor Anton, from Alpharetta, GA USA, submitted this picture of Shane Castle, Randalstown. Summer 2015
Patrick Hughes captured this stunning shot of Armagh Cathedral
Sunrise at Ballymorran Bay, Strangford Lough - Submitted by Glenn Millar June 2015
Legananny Dolmen, Co Down by Carson Harte
Wheatear (female) in prime condition to depart shortly for that long flight back to its Winter Grounds in Central Africa By Christine Cassidy, Derry
Coast line, Carrack A Rede. Taken during our annual family holiday 2014 - Andy Milford
I was driving along the Strangford Lough shore road (on a bird watching trip )two or three miles from Newtownards when I spotted this magical view of hay bales with the lough and Scrabo in the distance. I thought 'isn’t Northern Ireland the most wonderful place to live?'. It was so beautiful and I had to stop and take a photo. By Noeni Bryars, Harmony Hill Lambeg.
Locals claim this building in Portbraddan, Co Antrim is the smallest church in Ireland. It was built 1950s as cow byre. Photo by David Fennelly
Pans Rocks, Ballycastle Beach by Gordon Douglas
Mussendun: Peering west toward Downhill Beach from Mussendun Temple. Submitted by Barry Grayson, Los Angeles, CA.
Ballintoy harbour
Ballywalter Harbour. Photograph by Tim Gaston
Islandhill, Comber. Photograph by Tim Gaston
Carrickfergus Castle by Martin Soutar - Carrickfergus Castle
'These photographs were taken during my morning walk on Gibb's Island, Killyleagh, Co Down. It really is a beautiful place' - Pic Laura Skinner
Kircubbin harbour. Photo by Tim Gaston
The Bangor Maritime festival, June 7. Pic Maureen Ross

Ulster beauty spots  - readers' pictures

To send us your pictures email: digital.editorial@belfasttelegraph.co.uk 

The Sunday Times Best Places to Live Part 1 is the first in a two-part series.

This weekend it reveals the best places to live in the north and northeast of England, the Midlands, Northern Ireland and Wales.

Part two, published next Sunday, will reveal the best places in the southwest, east, London, Scotland and the northwest, as well as the overall best place to live in the UK.

Sunday Times home editor Helen Davies said: "Britain (sic) is full of great places to live, and our annual supplement celebrates the richness on offer from bustling market towns and buzzing city centres to sociable suburbs and sleepy hamlets.

"We go beyond dry statistics, drawing on personal experience and the expertise of our writers, to create the definitive list of the best places to live in the United Kingdom."

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